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Data Linkage Scotland Showcase 2016

Published on: 16th December 2016

Scotland is a global leader in linking the data that we all create through our daily interactions with health and social care, local government, the education system and our urban environments. On Tuesday 29th November, three Networks came together to showcase research that converts this data into knowledge to improve the lives of the population at local and national levels.

Prof Andrew Morris, Director of The Farr Institute Scotland welcomes the audience.

The Administrative Data Research Centre-Scotland, The Farr Institute Scotland and the Urban Big Data Centre hosted a Research Showcase at the University of Strathclyde’s Technology and Innovation Centre, Glasgow. Demonstrating the potential big data has to transform knowledge and evidence, the event was attended by around 200 representatives from academia, NHS, Scottish Government, local councils, Industry and knowledge transfer organisations.

The audience heard fascinating case studies, including:

  • the impact of birthweight on educational outcomes
  • the socioeconomic impact of the growth of the private rental market
  • a model to predict the risk of acquiring a healthcare-associated infection

There was also the opportunity to talk to representatives from the three Centres and other related organisations in the exhibition village.

Prof Jill Pell, Director of the Institute for Health and Wellbeing, University of Glasgow and Deputy Director of The Farr Institute Scotland gave the keynote address ‘Big is Beautiful’. Prof Pell inspired the audience with multiple illustrations of how administrative data can be used to understand whether public health care policies are effective and to provide evidence for policy makers’ decision making. The scale of data that can be accessed allows more secure conclusions to be reached and allows policy to be targeted at the correct population with more granularity. Prof Pell left the audience with her final thoughts: “Big Data offers scope for Innovation Plus – Using new methods to do new things”.


Prof Jill Pell, Deputy Director of The Farr Institute Scotland giving the keynote address ‘Big is Beautiful’

Speaking on behalf of the three Networks, Prof Nick Bailey, Associate Director of the Urban Big Data Centre said: “The event was a superb illustration of the range of work being conducted using big data in Scotland today. It is clear from the level of engagement on the day that there is a huge appetite from policy makers for the kinds of evidence which this research can provide. We are extremely fortunate, therefore, to have the three centres working together to ensure we maximise the potential of Scotland’s data assets.”

The Full list of speakers was:

  • Professor Nick Bailey, Associate Director Urban Big Data Centre
  • Professor Chris Dibben, Director Administrative Data Research Centre – Scotland
  • Professor Andrew Morris, Director The Farr Institute of Health Informatics Research
  • Professor Jill Pell, Director Institute of Health & Wellbeing, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Lynne Forrest, The ADRC-Scotland
  • Mr David Henderson, UBDC and The Farr Institute Scotland
  • Dr Kimberley Kavanagh, The Farr Institute Scotland
  • Prof Paul McKeigue, The Farr Institute Scotland
  • Dr Chris Playford, ADRC-Scotland


Poster Display discussions at Data Linkage Scotland Showcase.

The ADRC-Scotland, The Farr Institute and the UBDC are all part of the Scottish Informatics and Linkage Collaboration, SILC. You can read more about the role of SILC at www.datalinkagescotland.com. Further Information about SILC and the three Networks can be found in the showcase brochure or websites for each organisation.

ADRC-Scotland Overview.
Farr Institute Overview.
UBDC Overview.

ADRC-Scotland, Twitter @adrc_scotland
The Farr Institute, Twitter @FarrScotland
UBDC, Twitter @UrbanBigData


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